Wimbledon 2023: Carlos Alcaraz: “While Nadal and Djokovic are there, there will be no change of era”
Carlos Alcaraz he woke up fresh as a rose the day after becoming the new king of Wimbledon. The Murcian, after receiving a bouquet of flowers from Louis Vuittonthe last of his nine sponsors, sits down with MARCA to review the happiest moment of his short sports career.
Ask. Has she slept well?
Answer. Yes, the truth is that I slept well, more relaxed than the night before the final.
Q. What is the first thing you thought when you fell to the ground after Novak Djokovic missed the last forehand?
R. I didn’t think anything, my mind went blank. I was in shock and just dropped to the ground as a reaction. Once I got up, I wanted to go to my family, to my team, to give them a hug, to celebrate with them in that little time that I had. It was a moment of shock.
Q. Did you have any celebration prepared that you could not do?
R. Honestly no, whatever came out to me at that time. I got out to throw myself on the ground and make the croquette and that’s how it stayed.
Q. Juan Carlos Ferrero, your coach, commented on the eve of the final that on Friday I advised him not to look at his cell phone. Did he listen to you?
R. Halfway, that’s the truth. I am a 20-year-old boy who has many things to improve, one of which is the telephone. But I know that I was further apart than when I played the Roland Garros semifinals.
Q. You lost 5-0 in the first set of the final. Did you see her very lost or did you always keep the faith?
R. No, I had faith because it is a ‘Grand Slam’ and there was a long game left and it was going to be long. I knew I was going to get my chances and I know I thought after the first set, I had to level up. It is also true that if I had lost the second set, I would not be here right now. But I believed in myself at all times. If I lose, I would have been just as proud of myself because I had a legend in front of me.
Q. You commented and repeated that the triumph in the tennis cathedral is a dream come true.
R. Yes, it’s just that I had always wanted to win at Wimbledon, but I didn’t think I was going to get it so young.
P. Djokovic said that he had never faced someone like you and that he has the best of the ‘Big Three’ components. What do you think when you hear this?
R. That it is amazing, crazy, for him to say it who has played against tennis legends and who has played epic matches with Nadal, with Federer and with other players. That he says that he had not faced someone like me is a great compliment and that obviously makes me want to keep working and keep improving.
Q. You said that you had learned from what happened in the Roland Garros semifinal and you saw yourself on the track.
R. Yes, it is that I am another from Roland Garros. I learned from what happened and approached the game differently.
Q. Your victory at Wimbledon marks the beginning of a new era?
R. I don’t think so, I don’t think so because as long as Rafa and Djokovic are playing and are active there will not be a change of Era. In a few years, when they retire and don’t play anymore, the debate may come up again. Now it’s not the moment. I have won for me and for my team, not to start an Era.
Q. Do you know better how to play and win a five-set Wimbledon final against what is probably the best player in history?
R. I know it is true that it is more special and I will remember it with enthusiasm. I’ve always wanted to do these kinds of matches in big stadiums since I saw those big finals as a kid. I always wanted to be part of tournament history by playing those kinds of matches.
Q. Do you know how many congratulatory messages you have received?
R. They are countless. The truth is that a pass.
Q. Has there been one that has made you particularly excited?
R. Rafa’s, whenever Rafa congratulates you, you are especially excited because in the end it is your idol. I was also congratulated by Fernando Alonso, who is someone I admire. Will Smith surprised me when he congratulated me. My friend Jimmy Butler… There have been a lot of messages that have made me excited. I don’t want to leave anyone behind because there have been many sports legends, artists… I saw that Sebastián Yatra dedicated a song to me and said “this is for you. That all these people congratulate you is exciting.”
Q. Nadal sent a message directly to you?
Yes, yes, he sent me a message. First he sent it to me to wish me luck for the final and I appreciate it. That someone like him, an idol from my childhood and who still is, sends you strength and luck for the most important moment of your life, is something to admire.
Q. What was he saying?
Congratulations on the win. Enjoy it because these moments are magical and unique.
Q. You don’t rest and play the Hopman Cup in Nice next weekend. Wants?
R. Yes, because I will still have days to rest later. The Hopman Cup is a new tournament and I’m excited. I’m not used to playing this type of event so once I can play it, I feel like it and playing for Spain is always nice.
Q. What did Djokovic tell you online at the end of the final?
R. He told me congratulations and that I deserved it. I was also in shock at that time.
Q. Did you get goosebumps when you went out on the balcony of the All England Club to wave the trophy?
R. The truth is that I got goosebumps seeing so many people applauding. He had seen many winners do the same and I said to myself: ‘I want to be that man. I want to be the person who lifts that trophy in front of the people.’ It is very nice to celebrate with those who have been supporting you during the two weeks.
P. What lesson do you take from this Wimbledon?
R. That I am physically and mentally ready to play epic matches with great legends and on great stages.
Q. What souvenir of the tournament would you like to have in your house?
R. The photo of the celebration with my family.